I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore--
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping--rapping at my chamber door.
"'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door--
Only this and nothing more."
Ah, distinctly I remember, it was in the bleak December,
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow;--vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow--sorrow for the lost Lenore--
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore--
Nameless here for evermore.
And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me--filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating
"'Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door--
Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door;--
This it is and nothing more."
Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
"Sir," said I, "or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping--tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you"--here I opened wide the door:--
Darkness there and nothing more.
Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before;
But the silence was unbroken, and the darkness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, "Lenore!"
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, "Lenore!"
Merely this and nothing more.
Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon I heard again a tapping, somewhat louder than before.
"Surely," said I, "surely that is something at my window lattice;
Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore--
Let my heart be still a moment,
Now, this conclusion (which is that of the story as we have it upon record) is, no doubt, excessively proper and pleasant--but alas! like a great many pleasant things, is more pleasant than true, and I am indebted altogether to the "Isitsoornot" for the means of correcting the error.Page 26
In place of corn, he had black stones for his usual food; and yet, in spite of so hard a diet, he was so strong and swift that he would drag a load more weighty than the grandest temple in this city, at a rate surpassing that of the flight of most birds.Page 37
For my part, as soon as I had let the foresail run, I threw myself flat on deck, with my feet against the narrow gunwale of the bow, and with my hands grasping a ring-bolt near the foot of the fore-mast.Page 47
The fact is, Sir Humphrey Davy was about the last man in the world to commit himself on scientific topics.Page 51
in the price of lead, and nearly twenty-five per cent.Page 55
metal, a piece of wood, a drop of water, the atmosphere, a gas, caloric, electricity, the luminiferous ether.Page 58
It is to the absence of idiosyncratic organs, therefore, that we must attribute the nearly unlimited perception of the ultimate life.Page 86
And travellers now within that valley, Through the red-litten windows, see Vast forms that move fantastically To a discordant melody; While, like a rapid ghastly river, Through the pale door, A hideous throng rush out forever, And laugh--but smile no more.Page 104
These orders were sufficient, I well knew, to insure their immediate disappearance, one and all, as soon as my back was turned.Page 122
I judge from this circumstance, as well as from an air of exhaustion in the countenance of my friend, that he had not retired to bed during the whole of the preceding night.Page 138
I could reach the latter, from the platter beside me, to my mouth, with great effort, but no farther.Page 156
Recourse was had to figures, and these but sufficed to confound.Page 159
The mathematics afford no more absolute demonstrations than the sentiments of his art yields the artist.Page 167
Its ponderous wings are slowly and musically expanded.Page 176
As I turned the corner of the gable, the mastiff bounded towards me in stern silence, but with the eye and the whole air of a tiger.Page 187
Having reached his closet, I noiselessly entered, leaving the lamp, with a shade over it, on the outside.Page 190
Such, nevertheless, was the fact.Page 193
The singular being who had so disastrously exposed me, had been muffled, I remembered, in a cloak; and none had been worn at all by any of the members of our party with the exception of myself.Page 197
Above all was the sense of hearing acute.Page 203
Berenice!--I call upon her name--Berenice!--and from the gray ruins of memory a thousand tumultuous recollections are startled at the sound! Ah, vividly is her image before me now, as in the early days of her light-heartedness and joy! Oh, gorgeous yet fantastic beauty! Oh, sylph amid the shrubberies of Arnheim! Oh, Naiad among its fountains! And then--then all is mystery and terror, and a tale which should not be told.